Just about every dog owner in the northeast is familiar with the process of pulling ticks off their dogs during the spring and summer months. In this part of the country, any dog that spends any amount of time outdoors is at risk for ticks.
Ticks are parasites that latch onto a dog’s body by making a tiny incision in the dog’s skin. As a result, ticks can be painful and annoying for a dog, but that’s the least of their dangers. The reality is ticks can carry diseases and transmit them to your dog or even to you if they happen to latch onto you.
As a result, protecting your dog from ticks requires a commitment to your dog’s safety and providing them with the care and attention they need to reduce their risks. If you want to learn how to protect dogs from ticks, here are four steps that will help.
Step#1: Check Your Dog Every Time She Comes In From Outside
When your dog comes in from being outside, even if she was only out for a few minutes, you should run your hands over her body to see if you feel anything on her. The places ticks love most include around the neck, head, ears, feet, and between the toes, so be especially aware when looking in these areas.
Step #2: Keep Your Dog Away From Prime Tick Territories
Ticks can be found just about anywhere in your yard, but some spots are naturally more attractive to them than others. Ticks prefer to be in grassy, brushy, and wooded areas, so you will want to try and keep your dog away from these types of areas in your yard or when you are out and about taking her for a walk. Other areas you will also want to steer your dog clear of include wood piles, leaf litter, rock walls, and areas with high beach grass.
Step #3: Practice Good Yard Care for Preventing Ticks
The best thing you can do to prevent ticks in your own backyard is to keep your lawn mowed, your bushes trimmed, and your gardens weeded. You should also rake up any piles of leaves and remove any wood piles. Applying an outdoor tick spray treatment will also help deter ticks from populating in your yard and this will greatly reduce the number of ticks that could end up on your pet.
Step #4: Choose a Good Quality Flea and Tick Preventative for Your Dog
As important as the above three steps are, the most important thing you can do to help protect and prevent your dog from ticks is to choose a good quality flea and tick preventative for her. This will help not only kill ticks and fleas should they get on your dog, but also the flea eggs, so you can avoid an infestation before one can occur.
With so many different products available today, from collars and sprays to spot-ons, shampoos, and chewable tablets, it can be tough to choose one. Discussing your pet’s health and her tick preventative needs with your veterinarian will help ensure that the product you pick is the best one for you and your pet.